The Book I Wasn’t Supposed to Write … and all the “Real Books” — Post by Mary C. Findley

Awhile back hubby asked for a book of standards. It was supposed to be a simple guide for people who might want to have us help promote their books. It was supposed to explain our views and how we would decide what books we could support. I hemmed and hawed and said I didn’t quite get what he was looking for, because I have difficulty doing simple. However, I eventually jumped in and started cranking out a small book based on Philippians. I let hubby start reading it, and he said … it wasn’t what he was looking for. But he also said it was a great idea and I should keep going on it. So, I not only kept going, I added material from, of all things, the Book of Numbers, and then I kept going and added a pretty good chunk from Proverbs and even Ephesians.

The basic standards and guidelines did eventually get written, and they are in the appendix of the book I wasn’t supposed to write, which is this one:

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

This book has been brewing in my heart for a long time. I wanted to communicate what we should and shouldn’t read, what we should and shouldn’t write, and mostly how God wants us to think and read and write. We should not get our standards from men.

Understand what takes your breath away in a book while breathing the pure air of God’s truth. Using Philippians, Numbers, Proverbs, and Ephesians, readers and writers can learn to

  • apply eternal standards to reading and writing, fiction and non-fiction
  • be a discerning reader and a godly writer
  • discover positive and negative criteria for entertaining as well as teaching
  • understand what’s actually being taught and also what should be taught.

It’s not all about inspiration or objectionable elements. Learn to sniff out where the bad air of secularism wants to lead you.

In other good news, we finally have copies of all of our books in print. The photos are not as great as I hoped, but the books really look fantastic. So excited.
All the Antidisestablishmentarianism Books

All the Antidisestablishmentarianism Books

All the Conflict of the Ages Books

All the Conflict of the Ages Books

All the Benny and the Bank Robber Books

All the Benny and the Bank Robber Books

Other Historicals and Write for the King of Glory

Other Historicals and Write for the King of Glory

Scifi and Steampunk Books

Scifi and Steampunk Books

A new author friend got slightly crushed when his dad read his book, loved it, but said “I wish you’d published it.” (it was only ebook). So for those like that dad who need “real” books, here they are,all 24 of them. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly will be in print soon, too, but let me assure you that all our books are real and really published. Give them a try.

 

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Book Reviews — Post by Mary C. Findley

Slave Again by Alana Terry
4.0 out of 5 stars Freedom and Strength May Not Be What You Think September 7, 2014

Are you looking for an uplifting message of hope? You may have to look hard in this extraordinary story. Mee-Kyong was not someone I ever wanted to hear about again, so I admit I was reluctant to read it when I learned the subject of this book. Still, her story is compelling, because she tries so hard to save herself, and later even sacrifices for and tries to save someone else. Mee-kyong actually gets rescued, but all of these things demonstrate the most surprising and difficult lesson Terry has to teach. What does it really mean to be strong? What does it mean to be free, or to free someone else? What kind of help do people really need to satisfy their physical and spiritual hunger? These are hard, hard questions to answer, but Terry tackles them with strength and grace. It is not an easy book to read, but if you miss the opportunity, you will be poorer in spirit.

Saga of the Everking — Revised Edition by David G. Johnson

5.0 out of 5 stars A loving teacher and a proud king September 1, 2014

The characters, warmth, and humor are great in this short story, as well as the serious lessons. The Everking’s pride demands that he must secure his succession. He fears his warlike people will splinter if he fails to produce a suitable heir. This short story echoes the biblical Abraham and Sarah but has shocking twists and lessons about the price of doing things our own way, and forgetting who the real Everking is.

The Karini and Lamek Chronicles 3-Book Bundle by Cynthia P. Willow
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantasy Classic for All Ages August 11, 2014

Book 1 This is a story an adult can read all in one night, but I can imagine it becoming a great bedtime story that will reward your kids for hitting the hay on time. Lamek doesn’t know who he should be loyal to when the only life he knows is mockery and slavery, and the only friend he has is a warped and selfish dragon. Karini’s a timid pink fairy who’s promised to help the cause of freedom, but how do you get free from thirteen dragons? There’s an army you won’t expect, a separation and a sacrifice you won’t soon forget, and, best of all, there are two more books in the series to look forward to!

Book 2 This seems like a great book for children to read for themselves themselves. I enjoyed its simplicity and down-to-earth tone, while still allowing for flights of fantasy and a cast of magical characters. Unlike many that try to be high fantasy with complex language and deep symbolism. It’s a story of friendship, courage, loyalty, and has so many good moral lessons. It doesn’t wallow in the dark side, but clearly portrays evil as evil. It explores grief, personal sacrifice, but still has humor, bright spots, and good guys winning.

Book 3 This final story in the trilogy is about what people do and don’t wish for. You might get your wish, but it might not be what you want or need. Lamek is not the only one who learns that lesson in the climax of the Karini and Lamek Chronicles. Lessons in love, war, and character abound. Natas has no desire to re-unite with someone he thought abandoned him long ago. Parallel characters play off the different ways to look at responsibility, ambition, and true friendship. Sometimes the cost can be very high, before you learn the truth about yourself and how to do the right thing. A little magic doesn’t hurt, either.

 

 

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Read This Instead — Post by Mary C. Findley

anti sam harris ad

Sam Harris has a new book coming out on September 9, called Waking Up.  He claims we can do away with all religion now, and he is going to wake us up to what we should be doing instead of believing in God. But please read the quote in the graphic above, and understand that Harris is NOT interested in giving you a choice or being tolerant if you do want to continue to believe in God or practice a religion. If you would prefer to have a chance to hear evidence about whether, perhaps, Harris is proposing a replacement religion, rather than the end of religion, we suggest you take a look at our book, Antidisestablishmentarian. We quote Harris and hundreds of other Secular Humanists who consider belief a form of insanity, and want to take away your freedom to practice your faith. Below is an excerpt from Chapter Twelve.  Complete sources for quotations can be found in the book.

12. What Is True Science?

Pilate saith unto him [Jesus],What is truth?
John 18:38 KJV

Secularists like Charles Watts and Richard Dawkins affirm a single belief, though they vary in their methods of stating it. They believe that there is no evidence for the truth of any “revealed faith” and that only secularist science should be permitted to exist. People who call a religion “revealed” mean that somehow these people were told what to believe by a non-material means and that there is no outside evidence that the written record, their holy scriptures, are true or authoritative. Sam Harris, author of The End of Faith, said, “We have names for people who have many beliefs for which there is no rational justification. When their beliefs are extremely common we call them ‘religious’; otherwise, they are likely to be called ‘mad’, ‘psychotic’ or ‘delusional’…”1 That’s why they call it revealed faith, because secularists have changed the meaning of the word faith into blindly accepting something without evidence.

Every ancient polytheistic belief system has stories of outrageous behavior by its gods. Buddhism and similar “wisdom” religions have no gods per se but they rely upon “enlightenment” received in an otherworldly state of solitary meditation. Islam was delivered to Mohammed in the form of the Koran. The Latter Day Saints received their revelatory scriptures on golden plates from the angel Moroni. Andy Rooney once said about “revealed faiths” that “Those to whom his word was revealed were always alone in some remote place, like Moses. There wasn’t usually anyone else around when Mohammed got the word, either. Mormon Joseph Smith and Christian Scientist, Mary Baker Eddy, had exclusive audiences with God. We have to trust them as reporters – and you know how reporters are. They’ll do anything for a story.”2

Secularists delight in saying that all religions are equally unreliable, their revelations received in secret. But in the case of Moses, he received a relatively brief commission alone in the desert at the burning bush. The children of Israel did not say they were forced to swallow a tall tale of Moses’ secret revelation. They said, “The LORD our God hath shown us his glory and his greatness, and we have heard his voice out of the midst of the fire.” Most of the written laws of God were delivered in full view of the entire nation of Israel on Mt. Sinai. “We have seen this day that God doth talk with man, and he liveth. Now therefore why should we die?” (Deuteronomy 5:24, 25, KJV) The people, 603,550 fighting men plus women, children and the aged, (Numbers 1:46) were so convinced that God was really there in the thunder and lightning, and that the laws came directly from Him, that they begged Moses to go up on the mountain as their representative, convinced that as frail sinners they could die in the holy presence of God. Every Israelite could see the cloud and pillar of fire in the middle of the camp every day. All of them saw the plagues in Egypt, participated in the Red Sea crossing, watched Pharaoh’s army drown in the Red Sea, heard God speak to Moses at the tabernacle and saw the destruction of those who rebelled. None of these events took place in secret locations or for a chosen few.

In many cases prophets in the rest of the Old Testament spoke openly to the people as God gave them a revelation. “And Elijah said unto all the people, Come near unto me. And all the people came near unto him. And he repaired the altar of the LORD that was broken down. And Elijah took twelve stones, according to the number of the tribes of the sons of Jacob, unto whom the word of the LORD came.” (I Kings 18:30, 31, KJV) John the Baptist was in the desert but crowds of people flocked to him. He didn’t collect them after he got some secret revelation.

“Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan, And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.” (Matthew 3:5,6, KJV) John the Baptist gives testimony that the miraculous circumstances at Jesus’ baptism occurred in full view of all the people present with him at the event. “And John bare record, saying,’ I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.’ …’Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.’ And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.” (John 1:32-34, KJV).

The teachings and attesting miracles (attesting means proof that He was who He said He was) of Jesus Christ in the New Testament were usually in open places before hundreds or thousands of people. “And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things. … And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men.” (Mark 6:34, 42-44 KJV)

This lie (teaching in secret) was one of the false charges leveled against Jesus at his mockery of a trial. Though Jesus said very little at these so-called trials, he did answer this one charge. “Jesus answered him, ‘I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing. Why askest thou me? ask them which heard me, what I have said unto them: behold, they know what I said.’” (John 18:20,21, KJV)

1 Sam Harris, The End of Faith, W.W. Norton & Company New York, NY, 2004.
2 Andy Rooney, Sincerely, Andy Rooney, Essay Productions, Public Affairs, by the Perseus Group, New York, NY, 1999.

http://authl.it/1gv?d Amazon world link for the plain ebook and print editions

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/89123 Smashwords plain ebook versions

http://authl.it/1hn?d Illustrated ebook version

https://gumroad.com/l/xZwz Gumroad epub, mobi, and pdf versions of the illustrated version.

Just as a side note, when you go to Amazon, you will find two reviews,which,  when you read them, you should consider that neither of these people, however well-intentioned, has actually read the book. Also please read the Smashwords review.  But in the end, if you want to know for sure, you are just going to have to find out for yourself what it really says.

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A Biblical Definition of Wisdom — Guest Post by Richard Capriola

a nation under judgment
How do you define wisdom? For some it’s measured by a person’s level of knowledge and learning or by one’s level of education. Dictionaries define wisdom as philosophic and scientific learning. Other definitions of wisdom include sound judgment, good insight, or common sense. Native Americans believe wisdom is earned only after living a long life that brings learning and experience.

These definitions have merit, but they fall short of a biblical definition of wisdom. Biblical wisdom can be defined as the ability to see things from God’s point of view. As Christians, our wisdom grows when we understand and accept God’s point of view. The same is true of nations; they show wisdom when they align their policies with God’s view.

Without wisdom people can find themselves in trouble and countries risk disaster. The further a nation strays from God’s point of view, the closer it comes to being a nation under judgment.

We live in a nation that prides itself on being “one nation under God.” We ask for God’s blessing in songs like “God Bless America” by Irving Berlin. Our Supreme Court opens every session with “God save the United States and this Honorable Court.” The president and other politicians pandering for our votes give speeches that end with “God bless America.”

But what does it mean to be “one nation under God?” Have the words become merely a patriotic slogan? Do they have value only in times of national crises, when we feel threatened? Are we a nation asking for God’s protection and blessings while turning away from His point of view?

As a nation “under God” do we see things from God’s point of view when shaping national policies? Or have we lost our wisdom as a nation? When we create polices on hunger, homelessness, poverty, protecting the environment and marriage, are we following God’s point of view – or a political agenda? What does it say about our values when one of every fifty children lacks sufficient food, in a nation that wastes 40 percent of its food? These are important questions that must be asked if we value being a nation “under God” because the answers may point to a nation moving away from God’s point of view and losing its wisdom.

Christians cannot escape our responsibility to hold those we elect to public office accountable for crafting polices that reflect God’s point of view. If our nation is losing its wisdom – its ability to see things from God’s point of view – we have a responsibility to advocate for change and to elect leaders who believe that “one nation under God” is not merely a political slogan but a call to action that will bring our policies into line with God’s point of view.

Our Founding Fathers knew that we could not indefinitely exist apart from God’s point of view. George Mason warned that providence would punish national sins with national calamities. Thomas Jefferson said “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just and that his justice cannot sleep forever.” These great men understood that our nation’s future rests on its commitment to live by the words “one nation under God” and that we must create national polices that reflect His point of view rather than policies that conform to a political agenda.

Have we lost our wisdom as a nation – our ability to see things from God’s point of view? Ultimately the answer to that question will determine if we are headed toward being a nation under judgment.
————————————————-
Richard Capriola is the author of A Nation Under Judgment. His book defines wisdom as the ability to see things from God’s point of view. It addresses many of our nation’s social issues such as hunger, homelessness, marriage, the environment and abortion and empowers readers to consider if we are moving away from being One Nation Under God and moving toward God’s judgment. He completed four years of Clinical Pastoral education and has served as a hospital chaplain and mental health counselor. His book is available on Amazon and readers can view a book trailer at www.anationunderjudgment.com He resides in Katy Texas.

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Completely Revised and Expanded, in print and ebook: The Conflict of the Ages, Parts 1-3

 

Click to link to all Amazon Country sites

Conflict of the Ages Parts I-III Teacher Edition

Science, History, Literature reunited. Eyewitness testimony and the real scientific method. Read ancient manuscripts, search the world, and discover truth instead of buying into preconceptions. When did time begin? Who are the Sons of God? Did ancient Establishments of Religion construct cultural controls and make man a god? Rediscover the Worldwide Flood and the truth about the Ice Age.

It’s tough, but you need this exhaustive worldwide study of evidence, investigation, and exalting the Scriptures as the ultimate authority. There was one eyewitness to the beginning of the universe. It might surprise you to know how much of His truth has been preserved, and how many struggle today to put that truth in the hands of teachers and students.

 

Click to link to all Amazon Country sites

The Conflict of the Ages Part One The Scientific History of Origins Student

 

The Conflict of the Ages is a Multi-Part exploration of History, Science and ancient Literature. This first installment covers the concepts of God, time, Creation, physics, cosmology, and specifics about each day of Creation. We make comparisons with ancient sources to see where they agree with the Scriptural account. We reference classic and modern scientific views, exposing errors, preconceptions, presuppositions and falsehoods taught as fact by the mainstream scientific community. God is the first witness and the Bible the first eyewitness account of beginnings and origins.Other ancient documents contain at least some truths and parallel accounts.

 

Click to link to all Amazon country sites

The Conflict of the Ages Part II Student: The Origin of Evil in the World that Was

 

God made everything “very good”, so how did evil come into being? Is “original sin” real or just a myth? Could man talk to animals? There might be myths around the world that echo the creation story, but did ancient people believe in the fall of angels? What does “their eyes were opened” really mean?

 

Click here to link to all Amazon Country sites

The Conflict of the Ages III Student: They Deliberately Forgot: The Flood and the Ice Age

The worldwide Flood is one of the most discounted records in the Scriptures. Yet it is supported around the world by historical accounts. Take a look at feasibility studies on the safety and the stocking of the Ark.

The Geologic Column ought to prove that fossils reveal the age of the earth. They show progression from simple to complex organisms over millions of years. But do they? Take a look at “living fossils.” Meet the extinct creature found only in the “oldest” layers but more complex than “later” life forms. Consider the real conditions that surrounded the Flood and the Ice Age.

 

 

 

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New Release: Fifty Shades of Faithful — Post by Mary C. Findley

fifty shades one final tagline the edge 25

No, I’ve never published contemporary fiction before. Yes, I have been writing it, off and on, for years. Other things seemed more important. But I happened to show a Counselor-in-training friend a short story I wrote over 20 years ago called, “Cowboys and Indians”. She was thrilled with the ideas in the story, about threats to marriage, about trust and playful intimacy, and about the looming threat of divorce in Christian marriages. She wanted me to publish it stand-alone, but I thought I would add to it, and focus on the secondary characters of Sam and Vivian Tucker. He’s a cop. She’s a photographer. After 20+ years together, they both see marriage and Christianity a little differently from some people, and they want to help couples in trouble. Divorce, Adultery, intimacy issues, spousal abuse, cultural taboos, and even child trafficking are all here in this collection of five stories. One reviewer said that if this book had existed back when she was married, it might have saved her from divorce. Whew! With Fifty Shades of Gray so popular, even among Christians, and the movie digging those ideas deeper into everybody’s heads, I thought this was a need that I might be able to fill. Give Tucker&Tucker a chance to help more marriages and relationships learn about fidelity and intimacy, not dominance and submission.

Amazon http://authl.it/1s5?d

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/nl/book/fifty-shades-of-faithful/id899038029?l=en&mt=11

See Cynthia P. Willow’s review here! http://www.cynthiapwillow.com/under-the-willow-tree-blog/my-review-of-fifty-shades-of-faithful-by-mary-c-findley

“Finding any drugs or beer kegs, officer?” Tim asked dryly, coming into the kitchen/living room.
“No, sir, and I’m not finding any food either, except this fossilized pizza.” He prodded the unopened box on the counter. “My friend said you’d been here about four days, taking long showers in the middle of the night. What have you been eating?”
“Well, nothing, I guess. My dad brought me that pizza when he was here – I didn’t really feel like it at the time. The coffee was complimentary with the coffeemaker when I moved in, as I understand it. I don’t normally drink it.”
“Well, it’s all there is, so choke it down. What do you normally drink?”
“Straight bourbon,” Tim grunted, swigging the coffee. “Ugh, this stuff is horrible. How can you drink it?”
“With four sugars and three creams,” the police officer replied. “But you don’t have anything like that. If you drink bourbon, you must eat the bottles afterward.”
“Right, I do. And then I beat up my wife.”
“Yeah, I believe that as much as I believe the bourbon.”
“No, it’s true. Call up your headquarters, or whatever you call it. You’ll find a protection from abuse order under Timothy James Reynolds. Or is it filed under her name? Sandra – Sandra–”
Tim buried his face in his hands and sobbed. His cup fell on the floor and the coffee scalded his leg but he didn’t care. The police officer pulled him up onto his feet and shook him hard.
“Say, what is wrong with you? You’re not drunk. There are no drugs – no anything in this place. You’ve shaved and taken showers, even washed clothes, my friend tells me from spying on the laundry room. Everything’s perfectly neat – clothes put away, no dust. If I had to guess I’d say you’re a Christian. What’s all this about a protection from abuse order?”
“No, no, you’re making a big mistake, officer, calling me a Christian,” Tim said, dangling in the bigger man’s grip. “I’m a pervert, a sadist. Ask anyone who knows me. Ask my wife – Is she still my wife, do you think? Can they divorce you without you even knowing about it?”
“Sit down,” the officer said. Tim sat. “Tell me what’s going on.”
“Did Sandy send you? Is she gathering evidence? Don’t you have to read me my rights?” Tim was babbling. He knew it. He just didn’t know how to stop. He was tired, he was sick; he couldn’t think. But the story came pouring out of him anyway, and the stranger in the police uniform sat down across from him and listened without saying a word.
“So that’s how it is,” the officer murmured. “Look, son, it’s Sunday morning.”
“Is it?” Tim asked blankly.

 

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Building the Pyramids of Egypt According to Herodotus — post by Michael J. Findley

1280px-All_Gizah_Pyramids
The Greek Herodotus wrote a book in the 5th century BC he called Inquiries or To Know By Searching Out. We transliterate the letters Histories. Though written more than 1,600 years after the pyramids of Giza were built, the diligent inquiries of Herodotus are the most reliable records we have for the construction of the Egyptian pyramids. Herodotus inquired of the Egyptians alive in his day, who related this record to him. It is neither a primary nor a secondary source, yet it is the most accurate information available to us. Herodotus himself begins the section on Egypt with this disclaimer: “These Egyptian stories are for the benefit of whoever believes such tales: my rule in this history is that I record what is said by all as I have heard it.”

Those who, like myself, would like to know why the pyramids were built will find this disappointing. It only gives one version of one possible way the pyramids might have been constructed. Here is link to the complete work, The History of Herodotus parallel English/Greek English translation: G. C. Macaulay, (pub. Macmillan, London and NY) [1890] http://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/hh/ And here is a link to the section on the building of the pyramids. http://www.cheops-pyramide.ch/khufu-pyramid/herodotus.html

“Down to the time when Rhampsinitos was king, they told me there was in Egypt nothing but orderly rule, and Egypt prospered greatly; but after him Cheops became king over them and brought them to every kind of evil.” Cheops is his Greek name. He had several Egyptian names, but the most well know is Khufu. He enslaved the entire country and made “all the Egyptians work for him.” The description made by Herodotus makes Khufu seem like a crazed, power-mad maniac.
The individual stones were cut upstream and loaded onto a ship called a “baris.” Once the stone was unloaded, the barge was dragged upstream from the shore back to the place of stone cutting. The construction of the barges are described in detail.

The Egyptians “worked by a hundred thousand men at a time, for each three months continually. Of this oppression there passed ten years while the causeway was made by which they drew the stones, which causeway they built, and it is a work not much less, as it appears to me, than the pyramid; for the length of it is five furlongs and the breadth ten fathoms and the height, where it is highest, eight fathoms, and it is made of stone smoothed and with figures carved upon it. For this, they said, the ten years were spent, and for the underground chambers on the hill upon which the pyramids stand, which he caused to be made as sepulchral chambers for himself in an island, having conducted thither a channel from the Nile. For the making of the pyramid itself there passed a period of twenty years; and the pyramid is square, each side measuring eight hundred feet, and the height of it is the same. It is built of stone smoothed and fitted together in the most perfect manner, not one of the stones being less than thirty feet in length.”

From this description, most historians have dismissed this entire account because pulling these stones up any kind of causeway is impossible, as many have demonstrated. However, nothing in this says that the causeway was uphill. If the stones were pulled downhill, even on a slight grade, and they had some type of lubricant, the stones could be moved. The great pyramid has an estimated 2.3 million stones.

The three pyramids were built in a total of 106 years. “This Cheops, the Egyptians said, reigned fifty years; and after he was dead his brother Chephren succeeded to the kingdom. This king followed the same manner as the other, both in all the rest and also in that he made a pyramid, not indeed attaining to the measurements of that which was built by the former (this I know, having myself also measured it), and moreover there are no underground chambers beneath nor does a channel come from the Nile flowing to this one as to the other, in which the water coming through a conduit built for it flows round an island within, where they say that Cheops himself is laid: but for a basement he built the first course of Ethiopian stone of divers colours; and this pyramid he made forty feet lower than the other as regards size, building it close to the great pyramid. These stand both upon the same hill, which is about a hundred feet high. And Chephren they said reigned fifty and six years. Here then they reckon one hundred and six years, during which they say that there was nothing but evil for the Egyptians…”

The Egyptians who labored on the pyramids where fed, housed, clothed, and given medical attention. But they were not paid. Even so, the cost bankrupted the country. “On the pyramid it is declared in Egyptian writing how much was spent on radishes and onions and leeks for the workmen, and if I rightly remember that which the interpreter said in reading to me this inscription, a sum of one thousand six hundred talents of silver was spent; and if this is so, how much besides is likely to have been expended upon the iron with which they worked, and upon bread and clothing for the workmen, seeing that they were building the works for the time which has been mentioned and were occupied for no small time besides, as I suppose, in the cutting and bringing of the stones and in working at the excavation under the ground?”

“Cheops moreover came, they said, to such a pitch of wickedness, that being in want of money he caused his own daughter to sit in the stews, [the wages of prostitution] and ordered her to obtain from those who came a certain amount of money (how much it was they did not tell me); but she not only obtained the sum appointed by her father, but also she formed a design for herself privately to leave behind her a memorial, and she requested each man who came in to her to give her one stone upon her building: and of these stones, they told me, the pyramid was built which stands in front of the great pyramid in the middle of the three, each side being one hundred and fifty feet in length.” The third pyramid was built by Mykerinos, son of Cheops. “This king also left behind him a pyramid, much smaller than that of his father, of a square shape and measuring on each side three hundred feet lacking twenty, built moreover of Ethiopian stone up to half the height.”

The important point which has puzzled many is the actual assembly of the stones once they were on site. The description of Herodotus leaves much to the imagination. “This pyramid was made after the manner of steps, which some call “rows” and others “bases”: and when they had first made it thus, they raised the remaining stones with machines made of short pieces of timber, raising them first from the ground to the first stage of the steps, and when the stone got up to this it was placed upon another machine standing on the first stage, and so from this it was drawn to the second upon another machine; for as many as were the courses of the steps, so many machines there were also, or perhaps they transferred one and the same machine, made so as easily to be carried, to each stage successively, in order that they might take up the stones; for let it be told in both ways, according as it is reported. However that may be, the highest parts of it were finished first, and afterwards they proceeded to finish that which came next to them, and lastly they finished the parts of it near the ground and the lowest ranges.”

While the traditional view is that the stones could not be put in place this way, there are several possibilities. First, there was water surrounding the pyramid. The lower stones are much larger and a dike could have been constructed to make a moat or pond and float the larger stones into place. When they were too high to add more water, the “machines” took over. Levers can raise stones inches at a time. Since Herodotus uses the word machine, there were likely a series of levers. But it would be difficult to move the stone laterally, that is sideways. So the stone would require precise placement before the machine began lifting it.

The details Herodotus leaves with us certainly make the building of the pyramids by this method seem unlikely, though possible. As I began this piece, we still do not know why they were built.

Image courtesy of Ricardo Liberato – All Gizah Pyramids from Wikimedia Commons.

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